A ship carrying 67 migrants of various nationalities was found on the island of Kythera early Thursday morning. This is the third vessel of this type located on the island in the last 48 hours and brings the total number of refugees stranded in Kythera to 236, without any settlement or help from official agencies.
Media reported that the 236 people, including 40 women and children and a pregnant woman, were left stranded and helpless at Kapsali port, under the scorching sun with temperatures reaching 40 degrees Celsius.
Three Turkish nationals have been arrested as suspected human traffickers.
As Kythera does not have a migrant center or proper reception facilities, residents and visitors to the island have endeavored to help in any way possible, setting up a clean space with shades for dozens of stranded refugees and distributing umbrellas, food, water and basic necessities like shoes.
Μέσα σε λίγες ώρες ομάδα εθελοντών-αλληλέγγυων (ντόπιων αλλά & ανθρώπων που κάνουμε διακοπές στα Κύθηρα) στήσαμε ένα αξιοπρεπή χώρο για να φιλοξενηθούν οι πρόσφυγες. Καθαρίσαμε τον χώρο, πήραμε τα απαραίτητα μέτρα για πiné#Κυθηρα pic.twitter.com/FcCJ2NSQiq
— adplacitum (@adplacitum) August 18, 2022
According to local volunteers, there were no food supplies even for the uniformed port guards and police who, together with the migrants, are “cooking in the August sun”.
“Among them are many children and women suffering under the scorching sun,” said local resident Manolis Charos.
Local painter Manolis Charos told the media, “We give them food and water,” adding that the island’s lack of resources was illustrated by the fact that port officials didn’t even have handcuffs available for them. the arrest of the three Turkish nationals detained as traffickers on Wednesday.
“We were looking for plastic handcuffs from plumbers and electricians,” he added, describing the harsh conditions faced by children and especially women, who are mostly from Afghanistan and have remained stuck in the hot sun, heavily dressed.
“Even some parasols, which have been distributed, are practically useless, as they have no base and are the type to twist in the sand. But people are on hot concrete,” said fellow volunteer Despina Varderis.
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